Half-term training woes

I finished my c25k a few weeks ago and was able to run 5k in about 32 minutes. My plan was to continue to run twice a week and increase distance/speed. Sadly half-term has put a stop on my training this week. So now I have time to plan for my next runs, what training would suit to get me running further and increasing my speed? I have got to just over 4 miles now but it can be a mental challenge!!! Help needed please


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22 Replies

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  • Counterintuitively, to go faster you need to go slower. By which I mean, slow down and increase your endurance and distance. Once you have built a good base you're 5k times, etc will fall quickly. So on your weekend long run, go slowly and work on increasing the distance every week or two (or when you feel comfortable). Longer term, you might want to add / make one of your runs a tempo run, and another hill training. But basically, to make your 5k times faster, I'd suggest working on the longer distances but to do this you need to slow down and work on increasing distance.

  • OK that makes sense. I obviously saw a quick progression to 5k but now I seem to have plateau'd. I would like to get to 10k (no time frame specifically) so need to increase distance. I will go out on an easier pace then. What amount of distance increase would you suggest over a month? Or will that be dictated by my fitness?

  • Early on it is hard to say as fitness will dictate it somewhat. Generally the rule is don't increase distance by more that 10% each time, but you'll have noticed this rule isn't stuck to in C25K - this is because it is so early in the process and you have beginner gains. One way of doing it is to not worry about distance at all at the moment, but rather add on 2-3 mins (if you can) to one of your runs (say if you run on a weekend make this your 'long run' and add time to this each week or when you feel ready). Once you happy with time endurance, you might then think about how far you're running and increase by distance rather than time. The important thing though is to slow down, your long run should not be run at a difficult pace, otherwise you're moving away from make aerobic gains. So even if it feels too easy, keep it at a slow pace, the point here is to build a base rather than speed. Speed will come eventually. I really suggest the Reddit Running FAQ as a starting point: reddit.com/r/running/wiki/faq

  • You don't have to run to 5k at the moment, just slow up a tad and go for 30 mins 3 times a week for fitness benefits and build it more gradually, as it has only been a few weeks, probably why your having gremlins, take it easy!😊

  • I have a lot of gremlins as my confidence is lower than it should be, I had some illness a couple of years back that I manage now with medication but it threw me off kilter! I takes me a while to believe I can do it........hence my need to keep running. Doesn't help when my hubs does 5k in 26 minutes and he hasn't run since he left the army 2 years ago, grrrr. I do feel the benefits of running even if I don't see them physically so I must carry on. Thank you for your advice, some true words there.

  • This is your run.. not your Husband's... you do it...your way :)

  • Totally agree Dave.... my mantra, as ever, with most of us.. slow and steady! I am building up to attempting 10K, number 2.. it is slow, but I will get there.

    Love to Mrs Dave x

  • Why not do the long run once a week as suggested above, then try Stepping Stones and Speed podcasts alongside? And don't forget to just 'run happy' sometimes, that is go out there and do whatever takes your fancy at the time! This is your journey, enjoy it πŸ˜ƒ

  • I do need to remember to run happy. Sometimes the run was a mission to get done or a speed trial which didn't make me smile so much. Happy running is what I need and should remember to do, thank you for reminding me of that.

  • That is what it is all about.... for many of us anyway.. :)

  • Totally agree :)

  • It seems to be early days to be putting so much pressure on yourself - you're not a performing seal, just bask in your glory for a bit and if you find yourself being hard on yourself about performance, remember the first week of C25K and imagine complaining to W1R1 you that you're not happy finishing your 5k in over 32 minutes. :) Be proud of yourself, kiddo!

    If you need the structure of a programme, there are a fair few about - just don't try to increase too quickly, and don't put undue pressure on yourself to run fast as long distances are more a question of endurance than speed. Why not come over to the Bridge to 10 k forum?

  • Made me giggle again.. mfamilias ... I now have a performing seal image in my head.. in running gear! Thanks for that... a bit glum currently but that has cheered me up! :)

    Totally agree with your sentiments and advice here too :)

  • I do remember the first few weeks with run/walk intervals and how I struggled! Now I have got this far I am proud of myself. Longer term I would like a 10k challenge, I am not a gazelle so to think beyond that is daft!! I run twice a week so need a plan that covers that rather than 3 times a week. I have also seen some that add cross training in etc which I don't have access to. I did find it useful having a structured programme, it made me accountable! I will keep checking the bridge to 10k forum, thank you.

  • cross-training sounds very ominous but you can cross-train by power walking your dog, or going for a cycle ride ;) You have time to do this slowly but surely, and above all, without hurting yourself. Have a look at the Myasics plans, they are good and let you define the number of runs per week. Mum hat *off*.

  • Slow down, you move too fast.. gotta make this running last.. hey that sounds like a song :) Seriously...it needs to be a slow build, if a) you want to stay off the IC, and b) you wish to enjoy the whole running journey.

    Just take it steady, building up gradually. the danger with moving too far, too fast can be challenging mentally and physically and not in a good way. :)

    Maybe use the C25K+ podcasts, which many of us have, and see how you get on...but again, a slow build up... go for those 5K runs too and you will find distance and speed follow...my time for 5K has improved enormously. I run a 5K as one of my runs every week.. and I now call it my short run :)

    Good luck and enjoy!

  • I like the idea of 5k being my short run in the week, or the parkrun at the weekend of course!

  • I agree with davelinks , I run the 5K as my short run, but only NOW....... I have been running for a year to get up to this place I am now in......build up slowly. When I graduated.. I ran runs, just for pleasure. never checked distance or speed..then used the C25K+ podcasts, over three weeks and then carried on consolidating..

  • 5 k is my long run at the moment.

  • Wrong! We don't seem to be getting through! FORGET 10k just go for 5k GRADUALLY! and consolidate that!😊

  • I hope you're going steady HD, and enjoying the progressive runs. Going from 5 to 10 k should be a happy time. It's so much fun! Or it should be.

    It's not all about running, it's about the gaps in between too. I walk my neighbours dog mostly, or occasionally get out on my bike. I love walking the dog though, with no plan or anything. We just follow his nose. You can do that with running. It's amazing where it can take you. You can find every footpath, track short-cut, etc etc in your local area and then fan out once you've exhausted all those. Once you can get lost in a run it's amazing how much distance you can cover without realising it

  • I have still not managed to get out for a run this week what with working, oncalls and the kids at home on my days off. Feeling blue as I have seen many runners whilst out walking the dog. Oh well..........keep running everyone! I am planning my next route within the 3-4 mile distance.

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